Rocktron HUSH Pro and Patchmate Loop 8 Fort Dodge IA

Noise reduction is one thing, but tone reductiondue to problematic pedals or combinations of pedals is another thing entirely. One way around the problem is to isolate individualpedals using loops, and then switch themin and out of the signal chain as they are needed.

Frank Rieman Music Inc
(515) 576-2189
1024 Central Ave
Fort Dodge, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Acoustic Piano, Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music, DJ Equipment

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Carnes Bros
(563) 245-1901
Po Box 597
Elkader, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments

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Powerhouse Musical Supply
(319) 351-5590
2006 Northland Cir
Coralville, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Drums & Percussion, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

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Music Shop
(641) 236-5980
831 Broad St
Grinnell, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Electronic Keyboard, Sound Reinforcement, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

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Music Services
(641) 792-8342
1723 S 4Th Ave E
Newton, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Band & Orchestral, Print Music

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8Th Note Music
(515) 573-6683
1650 8Th Ave N
Fort Dodge, IA
 
Critchett Lowrey Organ Cen
(515) 278-1000
3304 100Street
Urbandale, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Acoustic Piano, Digital Piano, Organs

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Madsen Music Center
(712) 732-2081
Po Box 303
Storm Lake, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Acoustic Piano, Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Organs, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, DJ Equipment

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Larvick Speaker
(712) 255-0521
Po Box 1504
Sioux City, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, DJ Equipment

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Meister Music Store
(319) 524-1183
711 Main St
Keokuk, IA
Types of Instruments Sold
Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

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Rocktron HUSH Pro and Patchmate Loop 8

NON-MUSICAL NOISE IS THE MUSICIAN’Snemesis, and amp hum and hiss can spoil beautifulguitar tones, particularly when recording.Rocktron has been in the noise-eliminationgame since 1983, and the HUSH Pro StereoNoise Exterminator ($329 retail/$249 street)represents the company’s latest technology ina sleek, professional-grade package. The unit’s+4/-10 Reference Level switch and balancedXLR and unbalanced 1/4" inputs and outputslet you connect it to just about anything, whileits two-knob interface makes it easier to usethan most effects pedals.

gp1009_gear0338.jpgThe HUSH Pro does two things: The HUSHsection’s dynamically controlled low-pass filter(1kHz-40kHz) detects the input signal’scurrent highest frequency and filters out thefrequencies above it, while a downwardexpander provides up to 50dB of automatic volumereduction. The Gate section works in conjunctionwith the downward expander toeliminate all sound when the input signal dropsbelow the threshold set with the Gate Thresholdcontrol.

I tested the Hush Pro in stereo using a FractalAudio Axe-Fx Ultra, and in mono withinthe effects loop of a Rivera Venus 6 1x12 comboamp. In both cases, I dialed in amp settingsranging from typical to gain-crazy, and threwin a super-noisy early-’70s Electro-HarmonixBig Muff just for grins.

gp1009_gear_0339.jpgThe Gate section may be used independently,so I tried that first. After fine-tuning there sponse, the gate followed the decay of single notes and chords admirably, smoothlyfading them out at the very end like a goodengineer. The HUSH circuit worked equallywell, dramatically reducing—though, of course,not entirely eliminating—hiss and hum. Combiningthe two functions tamed even the nastiestdin, and squelched all sound when I wasn’tplaying. In short: the HUSH Pro performed brilliantly. My only gripe is the large and relatively heavy “lump-in-the-line” power supply,though Rocktron has good reasons for usingan external supply.

SWITCHEROO

Noise reduction is one thing, but tone reductiondue to problematic pedals or combinations of pedals is another thing entirely. Oneway around the problem is to isolate individual pedals using loops, and then switch themin and out of the signal chain as they are needed.This can be done simply by using a mechanicalswitching system with dedicated footswitchesfor each pedal/loop, but that stillleaves you tap dancing if you want to turn morethan one effect on or off at the same time.

The solution to that problem is a system that allows you to program groups of pedals/loops into presets, so that various combinations may be switched in or out simultaneously with the press of a single switch. And most professional switching systems—such as those designed and built by rack guru Bob Bradshaw—employ MIDI for that purpose. Rocktronintroduced the first factory produced Bradshaw switching system 20 years ago, andthe Patchmate Loop 8 ($549 retail/$389 street)is a direct descendent of that technology. TheLoop 8 sports 128 presets organized into groupsof eight (corresponding to the front p...

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